UK minister refutes allegations of donors stirring ethnic conflict
KATHMANDU, June 27: The UK has expressed concern over the political uncertainty in Nepal and said that the political stalemate, if not resolved early, would impact Nepal´s economy. Visiting British Minister of State for International Development Alan Duncan said he conveyed the concern to the government and political leaders during his two-day visit to Nepal.
"I have expressed my concerns about the possible impact of political uncertainty on the economy," said Duncan, reading out a statement at a press conference organized by the British Embassy on Wednesday, at the end of his visit to Kathmandu.
He cautioned that the political uncertainty was bound to affect investor´s confidence.
The British minister said he met the president, the prime minister, ministers and political leaders and urged them to find solution to the current deadlock. Duncan said he had raised the of issue impunity, which has been a matter of serious concern following the dissolution of the Constituent Assembly, with the prime minister.
Duncan calls on PM. (Photo: Bhaswor Ojha)
Meanwhile, Duncan dismissed allegations that the Department for International Development (DFID) and other donors are stirring ethnic conflict in the name of support to the poor.
"DFID has faced some accusations that we are somehow politically biased. Let me make it absolutely clear. We work in this country, as we do in other countries, from a position of neutrality and fairness," the British minister said.
When his attention was drawn to the DFID´s funding to politically active organization like Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities, Duncan said the DFID does not support any political organization.
When asked about his opinion on the attack on media May this year during the strike called by NEFIN, which gets funding from donors, the minister said, "It is absolutely wrong of you to focus on inaccurate accusations. I would defend what DFID does very strongly. If you want to continue to down that line the people you are attacking are some of the poorest people we are trying to help."